Summer (powder) skiing returns to Austria

The utterly incomprehensible 2020 rolls on with powder skiing greeting the die-hards who have taken advantage of the re-opening of the Austrian ski lifts.

On the 29th May 2020, permission was given by the Austrian government to restart the lift operations in the Austrian Alps. If you were there early on opening day, you got a powder day to remember with the thick mist breaking at about 2800m to give piercing blue skies. Under ski, the conditions were fantastic with about 20cm of new snow, lying across perfectly groomed, untouched slopes. It felt like a mental health offering after all the carnage of the last few months – it also felt like it was the re-start and end of the winter 19/20 season, after all, you should always end on a high.

Not so. After some sunny weather last week, there has been persistent high-altitude snow over the last week and a break in the clouds yesterday which offered sensational, June powder skiing conditions. Yesterday would have been another 29th May experience. And so, the winter rumbles on, at least at high-altitude. The Hintertux Glacier offers skiing 365 days per year but for high winds and Covid-19. Summer skiing is confined to the top section of the Hintertux Glacier, down to the Tuxerferner Haus and operates until early afternoon. After that, it is time to stretch out on a sunny terrace and enjoy the sight of the snow and ice of the glacier.

Powder skier on the Hintertux glacier.
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